When Georges Vuitton, the son of Louis Vuitton, created the house’s monogram in honor of his late father in 1896, an icon was born. Now, over 100 years later, six artists are putting a modern twist on the signature interwoven initials in a new project titled ‘The Icon and the Iconoclasts: A Celebration of Monogram’ for the brand’s 160th birthday.
Christian Louboutin, Cindy Sherman, Frank Gehry, Karl Lagerfeld, Marc Newson and Rei Kawakubo were given free rein to create limited edition accessories and bags using the famous monogram print, instructed by Delphine Arnault, the executive vice president of Louis Vuitton, and Nicolas Ghesquière, the creative director, to “blur the lines between fashion, art, architecture and product design.”
“In many ways it means The Monogram has come full circle: looking at its handcrafted roots once more, its direct connection to a person, its daring and genre defying audacity and, above all, its journey into the future for Louis Vuitton.”
While Louboutin’s shopping bag and shopping trolley designs melded his signature red and metal studs with the monogram, Gehry’s bag is quite a departure for the architect.
“I imagine there would be a lot of ‘establishment’ architects that would be snooty about me designing a handbag,” Gehry notes on the site. “That’s the best part!”
But the most interesting pieces come from, unsurprisingly, Lagerfeld. The prolific designer created an extravagant boxing suite, complete with punching bags (in various sizes), gloves and a trunk which, with its removable shelving, can serve as a case for the punching bags or a travel closet.
“I know more and more women — and men too — who have started to box. I thought it was something that one should do, if possible, in a very expensive way,” the designer says on the site.